Captain Watson assumed Command in May of 2020. He directs all Coast Guard missions in an area of responsibility that includes the Louisiana Gulf Coast and the Mississippi River System from Baton Rouge to the Gulf of Mexico out to the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf. It is among the largest, busiest and most complex coastal and port areas in the United States.

In his capacity as Sector Commander, Captain Watson serves as Captain of the Port, Officer in Charge of Marine Inspection, Federal Maritime Security Coordinator, Search and Rescue Mission Coordinator, and Federal On Scene Coordinator. His previous operational tours include serving as Commanding Officer at Marine Safety Unit Lake Charles, Louisiana, from 2012 to 2015 where he oversaw maritime safety, security, and environmental response missions throughout Southwest Louisiana. From 2010 to 2012, he served as Executive Officer at Marine Safety Unit Texas City, Texas with oversight of operations throughout the ports of Galveston, Texas City and Freeport, Texas. He also served as Executive Officer at Marine Safety Unit Cleveland, Ohio from 2005 to 2007 and deployed to Joint Field Office Baton Rouge in support of Hurricane Katrina and Rita Rescue and Recovery Operations in 2005.

Captain Watson’s staff assignments include serving as Senior Military Assistant to the Secretary of Homeland Security from 2015 to 2017. From 2007-2010, he served as Governmental and Organizational Liaison on the Coast Guard’s Congressional Affairs Staff and from 2001-2005, he served as the Eighth District Budget Officer.

Captain Watson holds a Master of Science in National Security Strategy from the National War College in Washington, D.C., a Master of Business Administration from Loyola University, New Orleans, Louisiana, as well as a Master of Arts in Education and a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Xavier University in New Orleans, Louisiana. Captain Watson also completed a Fellowship at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Seminar XXI for National Security and Foreign Policy in Washington, D.C.

Captain Watson’s military awards include the Legion of Merit, the Meritorious Service Medal (2), the Coast Guard Commendation Medal (3), the Coast Guard Achievement Medal (3), the Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal and the Armed Forces Service Medal.